David Brackin is the managing director of Stuff U Sell, the leading eBay trading assistant in the UK and a regular Tamebay contributor. This week he shares why you may be interested in eBay Concierge as a benefit of the Anchor Shop subscription:
In the latest price changes announced earlier this year, something was slipped into the eBay Anchor Shop package which to any seller who noticed it made it amazingly good value despite the price increase. The Concierge programme has existed for a while on eBay but this was the first time that seller could elect to join in by upgrading their shop subscription, and if you are the sort of size where you are hovering between shop levels, I think this makes the decision to upgrade an easy and obvious one.
I’ve often said that eBay’s route to success is in building up the world’s widest selection of inventory, and that means making it the best place to sell. The hundreds of little niggles that distract and annoy – both those which are just part and parcel of operating a consumer business, and those which are due to the arcane structures around eBay selling – can prevent sellers from doing what they do best: sourcing and listing inventory on the platform. And eBay really really needs sellers out doing that, as – unlike Amazon – it can’t source its own inventory.
Concierge is very much part of the answer.
A standard call into the Concierge team starts the same way as standard support – hunting around on the site until you find the phone number – but after that it gets much better. You can immediately tell that the cheery Dublin call-centre team aren’t being measured on how long they stay on the call – they are delighted to go through any issues you have as many time as it takes to explain something, and you get a real sense that they have been empowered to do a number of things on their own initiative, so that where standard support might be giving the answer that “I’m sorry the system won’t let me do that”, the concierge agent can agree that the system is giving an odd answer and just get on with fixing it. I prepared to bet that makes it a much more satisfying place to work, and that shows in the level of care you receive.
There are a few things that they can do straight away, but usually they will conference in a specialist – for example a returns specialist if there’s a tricky international returns cases that has gone wrong and needs a more detailed investigation. Importantly the first agent will stay on the call while you deal with the specialist and help put your points across to them, so it really feels like the first person you called is going to stay there and fix your problem, not pass the buck in some endless game of call forwarding you can get in some call centres. If you’ve two or three issues then they will stay through all off the calls and finish off making sure that you’ve understood all the results. And if you need a follow-up in a few days, the same agent will be calling you back to finish off the query.
I tend to save up any issues escalated to me by our customer support team and do them all in a single call once a week or fortnight and I’m routinely impressed at how well we’re able to tick through them all. We don’t always get the result that we’re after – but the team are always polite and clear in explaining how things are.
It’s not by any means perfect – there are still problems around dealing with international customer services and the technical knowledge and responses around new policies are still fairly basic, but I’ve been a professional seller now for nearly fifteen years on eBay and I can safely say that this feels like a massive step towards eBay being a genuine partner with me to solve the problems of selling on eBay, and freeing my time and energy up to worry about how to get more stuff to sell and how to delight our customers.